If you are managing a trucking fleet, chances are you’re always thinking about how to make your fleet more efficient. It is easy to slip into a feeling of complacency when your trucking fleet seems to be working correctly. However, there are always ways to maximize the fleet you have without spending more on labor or equipment. In fact, you might be surprised to learn that you can cut costs and improve efficiency with your trucking fleet. Here are a few tips to get you thinking more efficiently with the fleet you are managing.
1. Downsizing the Fleet
It may seem strange to cut the number of vehicles. However, this can actually improve efficiency. More vehicles on the road means more potential hazards and emergencies. By cutting the number of trucks in your fleet you will also be cutting the number of potential accidents. If inventory can be consolidated, this might be a good option. Several managers go way overboard with the number of trucks they use and by cutting this excess waste, you will have fewer headaches and even less risk for accidents. You will also have fewer drivers to keep track of and this means less reliability on individual drivers.
2. Cater To the Customer
This seems like a no-brainer for any business, but you’d be surprised how many managers don’t heed this simple task. In fleet management, it is easy to forget that you are not only responsible for taking care of your drivers, but also taking care of the customer. The customer should have a say in how they want their goods transported and this option will separate your service from the others. By adding this personal touch to your fleet, you will be able to more efficiently transport the goods your customers need.
3. Conserve Fuel
By cutting the number of vehicles, you will also be cutting the fuel costs of your fleet. A fleet fuel management solution that you can use is to have your drivers get receipts for all the fuel they are using. When the receipts come in, decide whether or not the fuel costs are larger than they should be. If this is the case, then your drivers may need to be taught about conserving the fuel in their trucks. You can always encourage your drivers to top off after their gauge dips below half way. The lower the gauge goes, the more expensive the cost of fueling.
4. Incentivize Good Performance
By incentivizing the performance of your drivers you will help create healthy competition within the driver circles. Drivers whose records are clear of accidents should be rewarded with gift cards, lunches, pay raises and promotions. You will notice that your drivers will stay more alert and be less accident prone, when their good behavior is rewarded.
These are just a few of the ways to streamline your fleet and make them more efficient. By following these guidelines, you will notice an increase in productivity and a decrease in spending and costs.